New kind of cement absorbs pollution

May 16, 2006

An Italian company has begun marketing a cement that is capable of absorbing pollution from vehicles.

Italcementi, which spent 10 years developing its TX Active, said the building material is capable of reducing urban pollution by more than 40 percent, the Italian news agency ANSA reported Tuesday.

Tests on a road near Milan showed TX Active cut the level of nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide by as much as 65 percent.

It functions via a chemical process called photocatalysis, whereby sunlight triggers a chemical reaction when titanium dioxide on the surface of the cement comes into contact with pollutants in the air. TX Active works most effectively in bright sunlight.

Italcementi said test results have been verified by independent bodies like the National Research Council.

TX Active cement has already been used on a number of buildings, including Air France's new headquarters at Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport, Rome's Dives in Misericordia church and Bordeaux's Hotel de Police.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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